Edo Govt. Presents N18.4M to Families of Deceased Employees

Edo State Government has presented cheques amounting to eighteen million, four hundred and fifty-five thousand, one hundred and fourteen Naira, sixteen kobo (N18,455,114.16) to six families of deceased employees in the Contributory Pensions Scheme (CPS).

Speaking during the occasion, the Edo State Head of Service, Anthony Okungbowa Esq., represented by the Permanent Secretary (General Services), Office of the Head of Service Edo State, Mrs. Priscillia Aziegbemhin, noted that 174 families have benefitted since the inception of the scheme in 2017.

According to Okungbowa, “Today’s presentation of cheques is the twenty-fifth in the series, with 174 families benefitting since the inception of the scheme in 2017. A total of N533,275,0666.89 has so far been disbursed to family members of deceased employees”.

The Head of Service noted that the presentation of cheques was made possible by the Government’s implementation of the Contributory Pension Scheme for public servants.

According to him, “The Scheme is a product of the Pensions Reform Act (2014) and the Edo State Contributory Pension Scheme Law (2010).

“The aspect of death benefits where the deceased beneficiaries are paid three times the annual salaries of their benefactor is captured in section 1 and 11(3) respectively of both laws, which is the Group Life Assurance for employees”.

He noted that the payment is the first of three components of the deceased employees’ death benefits.

Also speaking during the event, the Permanent Secretary and Chairman of the Edo State Pensions Bureau, Mrs. Aikefe Aigbavboa, expressed the State Government’s commitment to the welfare of employees in the State.

According to Aigbavboa, “I want to on behalf of the State Government sympathize with you all. We hope that these cheques will help cushion the effect of the loss of your loved ones. We cannot begin to fathom the extent of your loss. We can only empathize.

“Rest assured, as a Government and as individuals that we are with you to share in your most trying times and also to ensure that the benefits that accrue to your loved ones get to you”.

Thanking the State Government on behalf of the recipients, Ms. Ugbogbo Cynthia, next-of-kin to one of the deceased employees, expressed her appreciation to the Edo State Government for championing the cause of workers in the State.

Ms. Ugbogbo said: “I am overwhelmed with all of this and what is happening here today. I want to appreciate the Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki. Thank you for inviting us and giving us these cheques, even though our loved ones are gone. It shows the concern you have for workers. I am really short of words right now. I say God bless you all”.

Section 11 (1) of the Pension Reform Act makes insurance mandatory for all public servants which should be provided for by the employer, in this case, the State Government. It is a life assurance policy.

The Edo State Government pays a yearly premium for all State employees in the CPS; this the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration has been paying since 2017 in conformity to the full implementation of the CPS. On the eventual demise of any public servant in the State enrolled in the CPS, family members get three times the annual salary of the deceased as insurance compensation.

When the State keyed into the Contributory Pension Scheme, nine thousand, eight hundred and three (9803) staff members were enrolled in the scheme. The Edo State Government paid the sum of N80.7 million premium.

In 2018, the staff strength increased to ten thousand, eight hundred and fourteen (10,814), and the State Government paid N215 million as premium. This payment has continued on a yearly basis; the more the staff strength and higher the salaries, the higher the premium.

Within a short period of the eventual death of a public servant in the State, their death certificate is sent to the insurance company, who processes their cheques, which is then paid to the family of the deceased by the State Government.

The compliance of the Edo State Government to the Contributory Pension Scheme means that the CPS has been deeply entrenched into the public service, which is a display of unwavering commitment by the Obaseki administration towards the welfare of public servants in Edo State.

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